Jennifer nodded, but where could they go? A large hand clamped over her mouth and she felt herself being pulled back against a muscular chest. Hysteria filled her and she fought against her captor, but her arms were pinned to her sides.
“Quiet.” The low voice resonated in her head. “I’ll get you both out of here.”
As the hand on her mouth loosened, she whirled to face the man behind her. To her surprise, he was American. Not only that, but he looked vaguely familiar. He was tall, almost as tall as Brad, with dark blond hair and rather intense blue eyes. His dirty khakis notwithstanding, he had an air of authority about him and was apparently used to taking charge of a situation. Without another word, he grabbed her hand and took off running for the other end of the alley. Jennifer managed a wild grab for Marc as she was dragged away by their rescuer. When he reached the end of the alley he paused and peered into the clothes market. Mass confusion reigned here as well. Shops were abandoned and people ran for safety before the rebels reached this part of the marketplace.
Jennifer’s shoulder protested the abuse as their rescuer yanked her across the deserted square. Instead of heading to the main road, he ducked into the half-closed door of one of the shops. Marc and Jennifer slipped in behind him, gasping for breath.
“Hamad!” The man’s tone carried clearly above the riot, although his voice was still low. “Haraka. Nina haraka!”
A large Ugandan emerged from the back of the crowded shop. Without a word he swept aside the bolts of cloth piled high on his counter and bent down behind it, pulling open a trap door seemingly from nothing. Set into the floor and concealed by the counter, the dim light revealed a ladder leading down into darkness. After a final glance out the door, the American left Marc guarding the entrance and led Jennifer over to the counter.
“We haven’t got much time,” he said to his friend. “Are we prepared?”
“Ndiyo,” Hamad shrugged. “We are safe, but you must go down now. They must not see you here with them.”
“Marc, let’s go.” The man yanked a pistol out of his waistband.
How does he know our names? Jennifer desperately searched his face for some sign of recognition. Who is he?
Here's the next part.